Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Here comes the wind

Gusty trades have made the North Shore a paradise for wind powered recreationalists this past week. Kiteboarders and windsurfers have their own private hangouts. Here, near Tunnels Beach, a kiteboarder gets ready to ride the ripcurrent through a channel in the reef in order to get behind the breaking surf.

The sails are engineered to the body weight of the boarder providing enough power to zip along at high speed, but not so much so that he gets pulled into the wild blue yonder. A harness connects his body to his sail. Maneuvers are made with yanks on the sail handle and twists in the toeclips of the board. Invented on Maui, kiteboarding has become popular at several beaches on Kauai.